Tiger Woods produced his best competitive round for two years on Thursday on the first day of the Wyndham Championship at a soggy Sedgefield course in Greensboro, where he shot a six-under-par 64, two off the first round lead.
Woods, the world No 286 and who last week missed the cut at the US PGA Championship – the third major in a row he had done so – made seven birdies and one bogey in his first appearance in the North Carolina tournament, having announced the surprising change to his schedule only last week.
“It was electric, especially early,” he told PGA Tour Live. “The people have been fantastic, so nice and so supportive.”
It was Woods’ best round since shooting a 61 at the 2013 Bridgestone Invitational. The former world No1 needs a win or second place outright at Sedgefield in order to qualify for the four-event FedExCup play-offs, which start next week at The Barclays in New Jersey. He came into this week at No187 in that race, with 125 places available.
Asked whether his biggest strength over the round was his putting or iron play, Woods said: “They were both solid today. They were solid. It was nice. I was telling Joey [his caddie, Joe LaCava] it’s finally nice to get something out of a round, a round that could have been two to four under par, it’s finally six.”
William McGirt and Erik Compton of the US are first round leaders at eight under par while Martin Kaymer, who needs to finish fourth or better to make the FedEx Cup play-offs, was alongside Woods with a 64.
Preferred lies were in effect because of the wet condition of the course.
Woods tees off for the second round with Hideki Matsuyama and Brooks Koepka at 12.50pm local time.
This article was written by Mark Tallentire, for theguardian.com on Thursday 20th August 2015 23.20 Europe/Londonguardian.co.uk © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010